Horrifyingly Funny: A Review of the Visit

Rachel Stock, Staff Writer

We’ve all seen it before — the commercial of the creepy grandma telling the little girl to get in the oven… to clean it. “Oh, just a little farther, dear,” she suggests. “The kitchen’s got to be cleaned.”

That frightening Nana is played by Deanna Dunagan in M. Night Shyamalan’s new thriller, The Visit.

The advertisements for this new movie have been everywhere from the App Store to YouTube to just a regular commercial while watching the nightly news. “I want to see it so badly,” said Serena Bergeron, a sophomore at North Penn High School. She explained that it looks “really creepy,” and that she was excited for it to come out.

Prior to watching the new flick, viewers should know to expect some form of a plot twist, as this is a signature of many of M. Night Shyamalan’s works. Some of his past successes include The Happening, The Sixth Sense, Unbreakable, and The Last Airbender.

On September 13, a group of my friends and I set out to watch The Visit and we were shocked, to say the least. We found that the movie was less of a horror story and more of a comedic tale. Some of the best scenes included 13 year old Tyler Jameson, played by Ed Oxenbould, and his stellar rap performances under his stage name of T. Diamond Stylus.

Oxenbould raps about everything from girls to pineapple upside down cake, and he had the audience roaring with laughter. Sadly, the laughter was a result of how cheesy his rhymes were, not because they were actually good. I will be honest, though — I couldn’t rap about pineapple upside down cake either, not even if it was scripted.

Dan Kendrick, a fellow movie-goer, laughed as he explained, “That kid made the movie” and while many others may agree, “without all of the terrible comedy stunts, I probably would have fallen asleep.”

The movie was not scary at all, which was predicted by Zoe Katz, a junior at CB South. “There was too much hype about the movie. Everyone was expecting a thriller, but hey, always use the best parts in ads. I had a feeling that the oven scene would be the only creepy thing.” Sigh. You were right, Zoe.

Basically, if you’re looking to be scared, don’t watch The Visit. Other than random pop-ups and mysterious music, there is nothing about this film that will startle even a seven-year-old in the slightest way. If you are the type of person who enjoys laughing at staged humor and awkward puns, you just may enjoy this movie. Otherwise, it is a cinematic tragedy that has somehow raked in $52.1 million in the box office thus far.

In cohesion with IMDb and many other movie critics, I award approximately 3 out of 5 stars to this horror-comedy flick. While laughter was fairly frequent, fear was entirely absent; the film was mediocre at best. The best advice I can give is if your grandma asks you to clean her oven — don’t.